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To My Dear Elders: I’m Over Your Opinions On My Parenting

To My Dear Elders: I'm Over Your Opinions On My Parenting www.herviewfromhome.com
Written by Kimberly Patterson

In my day…stop right there. Have you tried…yes, thanks, now move on.

In the battlefield of parenting, it’s hard enough getting outta bed, putting on your suit of armor just to brave another day. But I swear, if I have to hear one more person’s opinion on what I do with my kid, I may just end up on the six o’clock news. Since when is it okay to give your two cents to any woman you see sporting a baby bump, carrying a toddler in tow or chaperoning a child?

From well-meaning family members to strangers on the street it seems everyone has an opinion about my parenting. It may be the fact that I am currently raising two toddlers that makes me especially sensitive to this subject, or rather an easy subject for others to judge. How easy it must be to pass me in the mall and see one of my children having a tantrum, throwing themselves on the ground and pass by with a snarky remark. Want to know why I don’t have a good comeback? Because I’m too tired, but believe me by the time I get back to my car and wrestle both kids into their booster seats, man did I ever put you in your place. Too bad you weren’t there to hear it.

With all due respect to the elderly, you my friends, are the worst! I live in Florida, which means I am exposed to an unreasonable amount of senior citizens all too eager to tell me that my generation is doing this whole parenting thing the wrong way. I’m sorry, but if I’m doing the calculations right, aren’t we the same generation raising your grandkids?

Man, I wish I had Doc Brown’s phone number from Back to the Future, I would love to take the Delorean back in time to critique your parenting style when your kids stepped out of line. Of course, I may recoil at what I might see. The good old days, right?

Speaking of good old days, how nice it must have been to throw your kids outside until the street lights came on. Yeah, I said it. While you stand there in judgment of me, let me throw some shade your way (that means..ugh..never mind). This generation has to engage with our kids, we don’t have a choice. This results in parents who are overworked, exhausted and downright can’t even.

Now it’s obvious I’m a millennial, so I will refuse to stereotype an entire generation by a few bad apples. To my own mother, women who are like mothers to me, select elders in my church who I love (you know who you are), please disregard. But for you others, please follow the golden rule I was taught by your generation: ‘If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all.’

I’m done with your opinions, keep them to yourself, or find another victim. I’m doing the best I can, and so is my generation. I don’t get this crap from my own people, you know why? Because they are in the trenches with me. They get it and you don’t. We are raising a generation during a time of terrorism, political and economical uncertainty, 13 years of war and salaries that have not seen increases in over 40 years. So whatever happened in your day, really isn’t relevant anyway.

In closing, here’s some advice for you (and you know who you are): get a hobby, get a life, because my parenting is no longer up for discussion, and I WILL remember to say that next time we cross paths in the mall.

About the author

Kimberly Patterson

Kimberly Patterson is a writer, wife and mother of two adorable, over-zealous toddlers. She spends her days in yoga pants, pecking away at the keys on her laptop and pulling her kids off of whatever household furniture they climb upon. She has been published on The Huffington Post, Scary Mommy, Her View From Home, The Mighty, and several other publications. Read more of her insights at truthisinthewriting.com.